(Cowboy) boot’s on the other foot

Last year I wrote, just slightly incredulously, about the Outback Steakhouse that we went to in Phoenix, Arizona. It purported to be Australian culture and food, but while the food was undeniably great, there wasn’t anything especially Australian about it except for the very silly names.

Well, today I went to the reverse – The Lone Star Saloon & Steakhouse here in Melbourne. Maybe it’s easiest if I compare both locations using the following table:

Outback Steakhouse Lone Star Saloon & Steakhouse
In the suburbs of Phoenix, AZ, USA In the suburbs of Melbourne, Vic, Australia
Won’t take bookings ‘cos they have no trouble filling the place Won’t take bookings ‘cos they have no trouble filling the place
Staffed by Americans who attempt to do Australian accents when greeted by Australians Staffed by Australians who attempt to do American accents when greeted by Americans
[Roo]Decorated with Australian memorabilia [A load of bullocks]Decorated with American memorabilia
Drink beer while you wait for your food Eat peanuts while you wait for your food
Serves "Australian" food with very silly names Serves "American" food with very silly names
[Bloomin Onion]Speciality is a suspicious looking but delicious fried onion concoction called "Bloomin’ Onion", which no Australian has ever heard of before [Texas Tumbleweed]Speciality is a suspicious looking but delicious fried onion concoction called "Texas Tumbleweed", which no American has ever heard of before
Serves Australian beers Serves American beers
Bar TV with sport (baseball, from memory!) Bar TV with sport (hmmm.. horseracing, rugby and cricket?!?)

We asked the waitress about any link between the two chains, and I think she said that they were started by the same people, which should come as no surprise! I wonder what the story is with the onions… did they order 40 million by mistake or something?

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